A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this movie.
Be yourself. True friendship overcomes the shallowness of cliquedom. Summer camp can be a great place to make friends and learn about yourself.
Positive Role Models
The characters are comedic summer camp archetypes, but when one of the campers runs away after receiving a letter informing her that her parents are getting a divorce, the rest of the campers work together to find her and be her friend in her moment of need.
Violence & Scariness
Water balloons are thrown on a school bus en route to a summer camp. A water balloon flies out the window and hits someone riding on the back of a motorcycle. A man drives a golf cart in reverse off of a dock into a lake. A bully slaps a camper on the back of the head.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Boy campers take turns using a telescope to spy on girl campers in their bikinis. They later sneak under the hut where the girls take showers and attempt to stick a video camera through a grate as the girls are shown showering from the neck up. Aside from this, there are moments capturing the early tween dating scene -- dances, talk of summer camp crushes, triple dates into the woods.
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"Crap." Some taunting -- "bonehead" and insults about how characters dress.
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Drinking, Drugs & Smoking
A man lights a cigar for another man.
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Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Camp Cucamonga is a 1990 TV movie featuring almost every tween TV star from the era, plus Jennifer Anniston in her first movie role. The summer camp movie is filled with standard summer camp hijinks -- bumbling camp leaders, self-assured teen camp counselors, and precocious tween campers taking their first awkward steps into dating. In spite of the big hair and the acid-washed denim (to say nothing of the very dated rap montage), the tweens in the movie behave like modern tweens, for better or worse -- there is some name-calling and taunting -- but the movie does try to tackle weightier topics like divorce, acceptance beyond cliques, and the ups and downs of growing up. To stay in the loop on more movies like this, you can sign up for weekly Family Movie Night emails.
Is It Any Good?
Beyond the hijinks, this movie does not shy away from weightier topics like divorce and fitting in among your peers, which means that it's not entirely a silly campground romp. But then again, there's an unintentionally hilarious rap montage thrown in the middle, where Jaleel White and the other campers shake their Guess jeans and their side-ponytails like they're in a Kid-N-Play video. Which means, all-in-all, that this movie is a campy camp movie, definitely dated but not without charm.
Besides being Jennifer Aniston's first credited movie role, Camp Cucamonga is a veritable who's-who of late-'80s/early-'90s tween stars representing the hit shows of that time, everything from Full House to The Wonder Years, Head of the Class to Family Matters, to say nothing of the brief appearances of Sherman Helmsley from The Jeffersons and Watergate felon G. Gordon Liddy. All-star cast aside, Camp Cucamonga is essentially standard summer camp fare a la Meatballs, where the authority figures are bumbling, the teen camp leaders cool (in a 1990 mullet-hair kind of way), and the campers themselves are tweens taking their first awkward steps into dating.
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